Faculty Profiles
Hydraulic Turbine R and D Lab

Hydraulic Turbine R & D Laboratory

     Hydraulic Turbine R & D Laboratory Brochure



      In India a fully automatic SCADA based Hydraulic Turbine R & D Laboratory has been set up in HRED, IIT Roorkee, Uttarakhand, a centre of excellence for small hydropower in the country, to validate the homologous hydro turbine models designed & fabricated by various turbine manufacturers. IIT, Roorkee is one of the oldest technical institute set up in 1847 and has played an important role in the development of Water resources in India, both through education of competent engineers as well as research work.

      Real turbines can be tested at site in real conditions for which it is designed, only after installation and that too with relatively high inaccuracy. Practically no improvement can be done once the machine has been installed. The tests are therefore conducted on scaled models, on scaled hydraulic conditions. Such model tests process is a time consuming job and it demands well calibrated equipment, which are costly and often tailor made. Larger turbine companies such as BHEL, Andritz and Voith have their own test facilities. However, smaller developers and consultants concerned with hydro power cannot afford such a big investment. Consequently several projects have faced surprises during their operation.


      The laboratory supports the Indian small hydropower industry (government as well as independent) to grow and compete in the International market in various aspects of hydroelectric power development:

  • Spearheading research and development activity in the country for hydro turbine.
  • Developing of human resources for small hydropower in respect of entrepreneurs, engineers, plant operators and researchers.
  • Generating of data and building expertise for solving site specific problems.
  • Providing affordable facility to small hydro manufactures for design verification.
  • Validating designs of small hydro turbine and layouts using CFD technique.
  • Developing and validating flow-measuring techniques leading to optimum utilization and generation.
  • Providing calibration facility for measuring instruments used for both field-testing and power-plant operation.
  • Providing facilities for testing and certification of turbines.


      Both experimental and field tests are being carried out to validate the forecast performance and output test results obtained from calculation methods. The experimental tests are to be conducted in the Francis and Kaplan turbine and using a scale model of the turbine. This stage of the hydraulic testing process provides a unique opportunity to verify the complete turbine operating range, taking into account complex operating phenomena, which are not covered in the theoretical calculation and tests carried out in previous stages. This high-tech scale model test laboratory are equipped a dedicated test-rigs for Francis and Kaplan turbine with provision of future extension for Impulse turbine, capable of simulating Conditions identical to those in a real hydropower plant.


      The guiding parameters in setting up this Lab are as follows:

  • Good overall accuracy in turbine efficiency measurement (± 0.17% in efficiency measurement at best efficiency point)
  • Meeting IEC 60193, ISO/IEC 17025 and ISO 4185 requirements.
  • Repeatability (target 0.15%).
  • Limiting the normal power consumption in the Laboratory to 300 kW level.
  • Flexible rig to accommodate many types and designs of turbines.
  • Test conditions and parameters to be stable.

      The key parameters that are measured on this test-rig are water head, water discharge, runner speed, torque and density. This test-rig can handle a power capacity up to 132 kW, for speeds of up to 980 rpm, with maximum test heads of 60 m with discharge 150 lt / s and max. discharge 906 lt./s. at head of 15m.





Max Head m 60 m with discharge 150 l/s.>
Max Discharge l/s 916 l/s. at head of 15 m (Both Pump)
Max Speed 985 RPM (rated)
Head Loss 10 m (total)
Dynamo-motor and Fourth quadrant VFD 132 kW (AC), Drive and motor Siemens Make
Hydro Static Bearing Make Voith, Germany
VFD Siemens Make
Universal Frequency counter/timer Agilent Make, 350 MHz, 12 digits, 100 PS
Flow Calibration Gravimetric (Weighing) method
Flow Measurement ABB Make Electromagnetic Flow meter,
Velocity range 0-10m/s (max.)
Head Measurement Yokogawa Make-Differential Pressure Transmitter
Torque Measurement Main Torque-HBM Make T12 torque meter
Friction Torque-HBM Make Z6 Load cell
Speed Measurement By HBM Make T12 torque meter
Measuring Tank and calibrator tank calibration with load cell Measuring tank 3no., 22T capacity RTN, HBM Make load cell,
Calibrator tank 1no. S-type, HBM Make load cell with 2T capacity load
Suction Head Measurement Yokogawa Make Differential pressure transmitter
Size of Turbine Model 350 mm in dia for Francis Turbine
350 mm in dia for Kaplan Turbine
Open Loop Configured as calibration loop by bye-passing the rig. through diverter unit in measuring tank/discharge tank.
Testing Loop Closed loop
Reservoir Size and Capacity 12.1m X 8m X 4.45m
Volume 217.8m3
Sump Size and Capacity 12.1m X 7.1m X 4.45m
Volume 300.69m3
Transfer Pumps Motors - 4 nos WPIL Make, Pump: Suction 400NS, Discharge 350NS, Speed 988rpm, Cap 1440 m3/hr, total head 24 m, Motor: 160 kW,988 rpm, V415 V, Siemens Make
Feed Pump-Motors - 2 nos. Kirlosker Make, 415V, 50Hz, 0.85 pf, 11 kW, 1470 RPM
Side Channel Pump-1no. Speck-Pumpen, Germany Make, 415V, 50Hz, 0.85 pf, 1.5 kW, 1440 RPM
Liquid Chiller Drycool systems Make, 40TR, water temp. 31°C max., water flow rate 182LPM


      Contribution (Finance, Knowledge, Participation) made by following are gratefully acknowledged.
      Government-Ministry of New and Renewable Energy

Institutions/Organization Turbine Manufacturer
  • Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee
  • Center Water and Power Research Station, Pune
  • Fluid Control Research Institute, Kerala
  • M. A. National Institute of Technology, Bhopal
  • Jadavpur University, Kolkata
  • Institute of Design of Electrical Measuring Instruments, Mumbai
  • Government Workshop, Roorkee
  • Voith Hydro
  • BHEL
  • Andritz
  • ABB
  • Energy Ventures
  • WIPL
  • NBCC
  • Cair Euromatic Automation
  • IBM-Locuz
  • Ansys
  • Unitech Instruments
  • Swagelok
  • Emerson Process Management
  • Gogoal Hydro
  • HBM
  • Fluke
  • Eltek Systems
  • Endress Hauser
  • Elgi
  • Yokogawa
  • Drycool System
  • Aimil
  • Yuken


Research Areas

       In hydraulic turbine R&D laboratory of HRED, IIT Roorkee, the research fields includes multi-phase hydro dynamics, water power project, hydraulic machinery etc.

  • Performance optimization in hydraulic machinary.
  • Analysis of fluid flow in draft tube.
  • Mitigation of vortex rope under part load operations.
  • Flow field display technique of hydraulic turbine.
  • Research of cavitation mechanism and anti-cavitation measures.
  • Measurement and control technique of fluctuation, cavitation in hydraulic turbine.
  • Vibration stability of hydraulic machinery.
  • Measurement of dynamic pressure, velocity field in hydraulic turbine.


Model Testing (as per IEC 60193)


Model Testing (as per IEC 60193)

Model Testing (as per IEC 60193)

Efficiency Testing

      All model testing are conducted as per IEC 60193:1999. The homologous turbine models are tested over the required operating range to determine its performance characteristics. The test data covers operating range 10m to 60m net head and 150 l/s to 916 l/s with sufficient data taken above and below these levels to allow adequate definition of the operating characteristics.

      Following parameters that are measured to find the output (in the form of efficiency, cavitation parameter and runaway speed) in this test-rig are

  • Water head
  • Water discharge
  • Runner speed
  • Shaft and friction torque
  • Temperature

       Performance tests are run at fixed wicket gate position or rotation. Each wicket gate position is run across the head range by varying the speed of the service pumps while maintaining a constant rotational speed of 1000 rpm and a constant NPSH. Each wicket gate position is expected to consist of approximately 15 to 20 data points each resulting from a 30 second scan in which 3000 samples are taken and averaged for the performance calculations.



Cavitation test

       Cavitation test are run on the model by setting a fixed wicket gate position rotation and running the model at a constant net head while varying the absolute pressure in the tail tank in a closed loop test stand to vary the Thoma cavitation coefficient, sigma (σ). The absolute pressure is lowered sufficiently to produce a drop in efficiency of at least one percent. This limit allows the sigma level to be considerably less than plant sigma.

        Sufficient data points are taken to define the values of critical sigma (σ1) where the efficiency decreases one percentage point from a constant value. The relationship of critical sigma to plant sigma is determined from this testing.

Runaway Speed test

       Runaway speed tests are run by setting selected wicket gate position and running the model at constant speed and approximately zero torque while varying the absolute tail water pressure in a closed test loop to vary the Thoma coefficient, sigma. The corresponding turbine discharge and axial hydraulic thrust are simultaneously measured.

In-situ Calibration

Flow Calibration

       Calibration of the electromagnetic flow meter are carried in open loop in which, Water is pumped from a sump having the constant water level and diverted to the measuring tank for a specified period through flow diverter using gravimetric approach as per ISO 5168 and ISO 4158.

      In hydraulic turbine R&D laboratory, measuring tanks of 45.4 ton water capacity is used in weighing balance system. 3 RTN load cells of 22 ton each are placed under the measuring tank at 1200 apart as per OIML R 76-1: 2006. Measuring tank load cell (HBM-RTN) having accuracy of class C3 (OMIL R60) are calibrated with calibrator tank load cell (HBM-S40A) having accuracy of class C3 (OMIL R60) then calibrator tank load cell are calibrated with F2 class standard weights.



Head Calibration

       Differential pressure transducers and cavitation pressure transducers are installed in the head measurement panel to measure net head across turbine and suction head respectively.

Torque Calibration

       The total torque produced by the turbine at any operating point is equal to the sum of calibrated shaft torque, measured by shaft torque transducer and friction torque, measured by a the load cell. The shaft torque transducer is fixed on the shaft between the turbine and the generator while friction torque load cell is connected to the hydrostatic bearing via a lever arm. A calibration arm is connected to the shaft torque transducer.

Speed Calibration

       The total torque produced by the turbine at any operating point is equal to the sum of calibrated shaft torque, measured by shaft torque transducer and friction torque, measured by a the load cell. The shaft torque transducer is fixed on the shaft between the turbine and the generator while friction torque load cell is connected to the hydrostatic bearing via a lever arm. A calibration arm is connected to the shaft torque transducer.

Accreditation Certificate

       Hydraulic Turbine R&D Laboratory is accredited by National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL) as ISO/IEC 17025:2017 for Hydro Turbine Model Testing and Fluid Flow Calibration as per IEC 60193:1999, ISO 4185:1980 & ISO 20456:2017. Accreditation is renewed every two years.
NABL is part of Asia Pacific Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (APLAC) which in turn is part of International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC).




High Speed Camera

       Capture high resolution digital images at ultra-high speeds for observation and understanding of bubble collapse phenomena in different cavitation condition

  • Make: Fastec
  • Model No.: TS4
  • 1280 x 1024 mono or vivid color images at over 510 frames per second at full resolution and 60,000 frames per second at reduced resolutions
  • Recording speeds of up to 365 frames per second at full resolution and 1541 fps at reduced resolutions


       To observe rotating vortex rope phenomenon at downstream of hydro turbine runner and draft tube under different operating conditions

       Stroboscope with digital display for manual and external control. High power Stroboscope with highest light intensity, separate lamp with high power quartz flashtube for large area illumination.

  • Make: Drello, Germany
  • Model No.: Drelloscope 3020
  • Display: Digital measurement value
  • Flash rate: 30 to 25000 flashes/min
  • Power supply: 220VAC±10, 50 Hz
  • Splash-proof lamp: LE 4040/20y

Rigid Borescope

       Borescope is used for visual observation where the area to be inaccessible. It is used in HT R & D Lab for observation of cavitation bubbles at entrance edge of runner and draft tube in hydro turbine

  • Make: karlheinz Germany
  • Model No.: K10.300.000
  • Diameter: 10mm, Length: 302 (12") Mm
  • Angle of View: 0° and Field of View: 65°
  • High Intensity Led Light Source
  • Maximum Frame Rate: 59.94 fps at full scanning and Effective Picture Element: 659(H)*504(V)

3-D Scanner (Both-Handheld and tripod based)

Scanners Make Specification Purpose
COMET L3D Camera,
Positioning System,
Additional Field of View,
Geomagic Design X Software
Carl Zeiss Optotechnik GmbH, Germany tripod based range:0.1 to 4 m accuracy:8 μm To extract the profile of turbine blade and guide vanes

To measure the erosion at different part of turbine
Portable Hand Held Scanner Creaform Inc., Canada Handheld rHandheld range:0.1 to 4 m accuracy:50 μm

Precision Pressure Calibrator

       The basic and advanced PPC4 includes all the pressure transducer calibration features in a state-of-the-art digital pressure calibrator

  • Make: Fluke
  • Model No.: KPPC4
  • Range: Full vacuum to 14 bar
  • Uncertainty: ±0.015% at auto range



  • Abbas, A., and Kumar, A., 2017. "Development of draft tube in hydro-turbine: a review", International Journal of Ambient Energy, Vol. 38, No. 3, 323–330.(Taylor and Francis, Scopus)
  • Abbas, A., and Kumar, A., "Evaluation of uncertainty in flow and performance parameters in Francis turbine test rig" International journal of Flow Measurement and Instrumentation, Under Review (Communicated on 15 July 2017)
  • Abbas, A., and Kumar, A., "Numerical and experimental investigations of draft tube under different operating conditions" Progress in Computational Fluid Dynamics, Under Review (Communicated on 03 Dec. 2017)
  • Abbas, A., Jhankal, N.K., and Kumar, A., 2017. "Calibration of Electromagnetic Flow meter using Advance SCADA System", Flotek.g 17, Innovative Solutions in Flow Measurement and Control - Oil, Water and Gas,28-30 Aug 2017, FCRI, Palakkad.


  Professor in Charge
  Prof Arun Kumar

Area of expertise:
  • Vast experience in the field or hydro power engineering

Phone : Off.(+91 1332) 285821
E-mail :,

  Laboratory Chief
  Mukesh Mangla

Area of expertise:
  • Hydraulic turbine design & Model testing and Field Testing at Power house
  • CFD in hydro turbine

Phone : Off.(+91 1332) 286133
E-mail :,

  Research Scholar
  Mr. Ali Abbas

Area of expertise:
  • CFD in hydro turbine
  • Flow analysis in Draft tube
  • Calibration of field parameter

Phone : Off.(+91 1332) 286135
E-mail :

  Research Staff
  Mr. Nitin Kumar Jhankal
Research Associate

Area of expertise:
  • Instrumentation & Control, SCADA operation, Calibration of field instruments
  • Measurement of fluctuation in flow parameters
  • Certified Laboratory Quality Management System and Internal Audit as per ISO/IEC-17025 and NABL requirements

Phone : Off.(+91 1332) 286134
E-mail :

  Mr. Museer Alam
Project Associate

Area of expertise:
  • Mechanical and fabrication works
  • 3D drawings
  • Calibration of field instruments
  • Certified Laboratory Quality Management System and Internal Audit as per ISO/IEC-17025 and NABL requirements

Phone : Off.(+91 1332) 286134
E-mail :